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The AMD Performance Advantage

The overall AMD APU proposition centres on offering the most relevant features and solid performance wrapped inside a package that is high on value. Nowhere are these sentiments more accurately reflected than in the desktop APU market.

AMD understands that the CPU performance of any modern processor is good enough for everyday tasks. As more and more applications begin to tap into the benefits of the GPU, where the company is undoubtedly strongest, APUs look better and better.

In order to provide a meaningful comparison, we have undertaken tests with two sub-£100 processors from both AMD and Intel, represented by the Kaveri-powerd A10-7860K APU and Skylake-infused Core i3-6100 processors, respectively. We're examining CPU and GPU performance in common applications to accurately determine whether AMD is truly able to compete with the latest architecture from Intel. Please note that AMD has since released a better desktop architecture, known as Bristol Ridge, which will undoubtedly increase performance at the same seminal price point.

The computational wPrime test is a good example of how efficient a processor is when it is pushed to the limit. This kind of test is far more difficult than everyday tests such as emailing, word processing and even reasonable multitasking. The result shows that AMD is within the same ballpark as Intel, and any time below 500 seconds, going by empirical evidence, provides a more than decent general experience.

Yet it's on the graphics side that AMD is undoubtedly stronger. Run on Windows 10 and with the latest updates in place, the AMD price-comparable processor is over 70 per cent faster!

Is running some of the very latest games outside the remit of these budget processors? AMD offers almost twice the performance of Intel, backed by years of Radeon technology baked into each and every APU. Should you tweak the settings enough, even latest games, such as The Division, are playable at a 1080p resolution.

Though it is more reasonable to imagine a mainstream PC equipped with an APU to offer a better games-playing experience in League of Legends. In this instance, set to very high quality, the AMD A10-7860K offers a very smooth, immersive experience. Any gamer wanting oodles more performance need only look at a discrete graphics card such as the Radeon RX 460.

It's abundantly clear that AMD offers a very enviable mix of CPU and, particularly, GPU performance from its wide range of APUs. The inherent graphics capability, born from years of development for discrete graphics cards, plays an important role in differentiating AMD from rival Intel. The performance gap is only going to get larger as the latest 'Bristol Ridge' APUs hit the market, so if you are after an all-round PC that is adept at all tasks, look towards an AMD APU.